I try not to get too political on here because in my experience it leads to far more arguments than friendships. My firm belief is we have an antiquated voting system set up when there were 2 political parties and this needs reform. This said politics as a whole in the UK is run by millionaires who, with an average annual income in the UK for an MP from 8 May 2015 is £74,000. This is 2.7 times higher than the national average of £27,600 in 2015/2016 and this is before any of the expenses they receive to cover the costs of running an office, employing staff, having somewhere to live in London and in their constituency, and travelling between Parliament and their constituency. So what I’m saying really is in my opinion very few “average Joes” make it in to this big boys club, and even fewer from state schools so is it any real surprise that they do not act in our best interests? May be this is the revolutionary in me talking having taken a stand recently and been stonewalled at several turns, or maybe it is the conspiracy theorist in me after reading one too many novels.
What I do know however is that my MP voted for the reduction in extra payments to disabled people in their ESA – in my experience of disabled friends this money has been used to fund specialist equipment to apply for jobs or for large taxis to interviews etc it certainly hasn’t been a reason for a genuinely disabled person to not work. He also voted against LGBT rights so for me I am represented by a person I could not be more against in his views on minorities. Then again I’m not a minority public sector educated MP, with shares in companies who are benefiting from privatisation whilst until recently at least supping on my tax payer subsidised pint! Now I’m not for one minute underselling the massive decisions those who bother to turn up regularly vote on, but I certainly am saying they are out of touch with their constituents. It doesn’t matter what colour is running the country this is still true. How does this relate to my title, why has distrust in MP’s rose and suddenly everything been under the microscope, well it rose sharply after the expenses scandal, we heard about paying for cleaning duck ponds, second homes 5 minutes closer to Westminster and paying family members. These we are told were the minority, still we tar them all. Then when we hear how the expense system has been simplified but to balance it out there has been an 11% pay rise at a time when pubic sector pay has been frozen or limited to 1% distrust rises again.
You find this in every walk of life. Those who take the p!ss over benefits they are plastered all over the papers but where is the story on me who didn’t claim benefits I was entitled for, for 7 years until my disability got to the point I had to reduce my hours so had no choice. Where is the story today saying I have a letter informing me I could claim additional benefits now but I don’t because we can just about make do – MUG many of you may be screaming, for me if I did it I could justify having Sky TV and all my sports channels – EVEN BIGGER MUG I can hear the chants now, or maybe it is just principled with good morals that I hope to pass on to my children. None of this makes a good story though does it. The benefits cheats, the fraudsters, the immigrants stealing our homes and jobs, these stories sell newspapers and it is a sad indictment of the world. Then again people at the bottom see those at the top evading tax, companies like Google, Amazon and Starbucks using loopholes so why shouldn’t they? Personally I say close the loopholes and have 100% freedom of information on everything. Stop all the millions pouring into election campaigns instead pass laws to make them factual not blaming others for why X,Y & Z hasn’t happened.
Well enough said about the powers that be, I am just maybe explaining why you see the breakdown in society. Now to every day life. Morality has broken down on so many levels, I see people abusing blue badges everyday by this I mean relatives using badges when they are not picking up or with the person on the card, I see ordinary people without blue badges park in disabled bays and some of the best excuses I’ve heard are dumbfounding “I was only running to the machine it took me like 2 minutes” my reply of “really sir lucky you even if I had been able to park in a bay I pay for it would have taken me 5 times longer” I hope struck a nerve, at some point anybody could join our club, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again we don’t discriminate and meet new members everyday! Disabled people park in parent and toddler bays so now parents retaliate and do the same, and so on and so forth.
The trouble is it can sometimes really impede on everyday life. Most recently it happened at my LG’s nursery. Due to my mobility issues I was given permission to park in a space out the front of the building blocking in the staff. Now I’m not able to take her or pick her up everyday but news of this new “parking space” however spread like wildfire and very soon every Tom, DIck and Harry were parking there. I accept I am not by the law of averages going to be the only disabled person attending the nursey so understand others will park there quite legitimately if they have spoke with th nursery team, you would think others though seeing the blue badge and walking aids/crutches/wheelchair most intelligent people would be able to fathom out why I park there. Believe you me, nothing would make me happier than being able to take her and collect her everyday and not be unable to wheel the gravel stones to the door but I can’t I’d happily trade with anyone.
Imagine my surprise when turning up as a surprise a few weeks ago that there was a chain there preventing me parking and I had to sit and wait with my dad in the car park instead of collecting my LG and signing some paperwork as I’d asked. It turns out that others had seen me park there, and despite the fairly obvious visual clue it had not registered with them. It simply became a more convenient space for them to rush in or to use when they are , in a rush without a care or a thought in . Now if I am going I have to ring ahead and give notice. Are people really that wrapped up in their own little bubbles that they cannot see the bigger picture.
It happens all too regularly these days, in my hometown there are a group of and I use the term loosely “people” that think it is ok to go round vandalising other peoples cars. Smashed windows and wing mirrors accompany reports of keyed cars in my hometown and you do a little asking around and the same old names crop up, now of course there is no evidence so we all have to spend our own money on expensive surveillance equipment and/or insurance excesses repairing the damage that is done. I am an admin on a Wymondham Page and there isn’t a week that goes by when some sort of damage isn’t reported. I could go on but it just winds me up.
People just need to be considerate and think what if that person was me. When you start to do that and help others you feel much better about yourselves. Then you can come together for the good of your community, town region or even your country. It’s time we stopped being treated as idiots by people who behave so appallingly in our name in government. Challenge them and challenge well informed but also with solutions and you never know what you may achieve and who you may help!